G5 vs Intel

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by saltyzoo, Dec 27, 2007.

  1. macrumors 65816

    saltyzoo

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2007
    #1
    I'm pretty new to mac, and I only know them as intel machines, so I'm a little clueless here.

    I'm considering purchasing a Mac Pro to use as a server and I don't need a huge amount of horsepower. From a technical point of view a G5 will do me just fine.

    But what I'm not sure of is what I might be missing in running a PowerPC rather than intel. Is there certain software that won't run on the old hardware, or any other incompatibilities I need to be aware of?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
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    Cuidad de México
    #2
  3. thread starter macrumors 65816

    saltyzoo

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2007
    #3
    Disk speed, expandability, and RAM is why the pro is a better choice for me than the mini. dual G5 2 Gig will be more than enough cpu for me.

    My question is more compatibility. One would assume that if it runs Leopard, there wouldn't be any compatibility problems, but assuming is a bad thing.

    PS> I've got a couple dual core mini's already. ;)
     
  4. macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    #4
    Raptors run well in iMac G5 (Rev. A/B) ;)

    64-bit Intel is going to give you the best support from Leopard according to Apple. I've noticed that G5's are much more perky as well moving to Leopard.
     
  5. macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2004
    #5
    Yes, there is some software that won't run on G5s. Mostly some recent games, but there are at least a couple of Intel-only apps. On the other hand, there's still far more PPC-only software than Universal or Intel-only software, and PPC software on Intel-based Macs has to run through Rosetta, which is sometimes too slow or glitchy. So you'd actually have a much larger base of native software available for a G5, but it depends on what you want to run, exactly. Compatibility depends largely on the individual apps, not the operating system.

    --Eric
     
  6. macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    #6
    Hopefully the OP already took into account Intel-only applications.

    Right? ;)
     
  7. thread starter macrumors 65816

    saltyzoo

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    Oct 4, 2007
    #7
    No, that's what I'm asking. What kind of stuff is intel only? Any examples? How can you tell?
     
  8. macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    #8
    There's a chunk of 64-bit Leopard that's Intel only.

    I was more concerned about application software.
     
  9. thread starter macrumors 65816

    saltyzoo

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2007
    #9
    So am I. Somehow I think I'm not communicating well. I'm asking what things I might run into that wouldn't run on the G5 and how would I know if it would run or not?
     
  10. macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    #10
    I don't know what application software you want to run. :p
     
  11. macrumors 68000

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    #11
    He wants to know all the applications that don't work on G5's.
     
  12. macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    #12
    I don't know what he wants to run.

    It could be Apache to Filemaker Server to VMWare.

    I can't give a hardware solution unless I know what goal you're trying to reach.
     
  13. thread starter macrumors 65816

    saltyzoo

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2007
    #13
    No, I just asked for an example, and how to tell what wouldn't run.

    I want to know how to find out myself. An example and a clue on how to do that would be helpful.
     
  14. macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    #14
    Begin with a goal in mind.
     
  15. thread starter macrumors 65816

    saltyzoo

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    Oct 4, 2007
    #15
    I have a goal. I'd like to know how I can tell if an app will run on a G5. Apparently I'm not going to achieve that goal here.
     
  16. macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    #16
    Most applications do provide easily found system requirements. A good OS X developer will go for a Universal Binary. (PowerPC & Intel)

    What is your goal then?
     
  17. macrumors 604

    thejadedmonkey

    Joined:
    May 28, 2005
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    #17
    Ask, and yee shall recieve. Just go to the developers website and see what they say. If it says "Universal", it's designed for both. If it says PPC only, it's PPC only, and if it says intel only, it's intel only.

    Some software can not run under rosetta, and it'll be listed as such under the requirements.

    Generally, whatever it says under the system requirements is what you'll need.
     
  18. thread starter macrumors 65816

    saltyzoo

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2007
    #18
    Thanks, that was helpful.

    So I have to trust the developer to tell me? There's no way to tell by the package itself? Bummer.

    BTW, I doubt it will be an issue since apache / mysql is 99% of all I'll need, but I want to make an informed decision. What you don't know is usually what bites you on the arse.
     
  19. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2007
    #19
    Am I missing something? In your first sentence you said you want to use the machine as a server. If so, why the issues regarding software compatibility? Your only going to use 10.5 server which runs fine. Sure you might add a few things such as SQL and Third Party E-mail software but all of that will be fine on the G5. Have put heaps of G5s in Studios without any issues. The only issue would be the G5 is limited to 2 HDs but this can be doubled for a few hundred $$.

    Save your money. For the price of the Mac pro you can have a G5 as a server and an iMac, Macbook or Macbook Pro for your desktop.
     
  20. thread starter macrumors 65816

    saltyzoo

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2007
    #20
    You're not missing anything. I just wanted to make sure I wasn't missing something. Actually the 2 hard drive limitation is something I didn't realize.
     
  21. macrumors G5

    Consultant

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2007
    #21
    There are DIFFERENT definition to being a server. You need to clarify.

    - Run OSX server
    - High performance RAID server for video storage
    - Low requirement server running low CPU apps
    - Media server connected to TV
    - etc.

    Typically one requirement is ability to install additional harddrives, which seems to be a requirement for yod because you are looking into PowerMac or Mac Pro (instead of a Mac Mini or PowerMac G4).
     
  22. thread starter macrumors 65816

    saltyzoo

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2007
    #22
    For the most part it will be just a simple MAMP (Mac Apache MySQL PHP) server. RAID would be nice, but not necessary. Expandable, reasonably fast disks. But who knows what other things I might decide to run on it someday? That's why I want to understand the limitations of non-intel.
     
  23. macrumors Penryn

    rdowns

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2003
    #23
    Seems to me that if you are so concerned with the limitations of a discontinued architecture, then you should go Intel. The limitations of the G5 will only worsen with time.
     
  24. thread starter macrumors 65816

    saltyzoo

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    Oct 4, 2007
    #24
    Wanting to know what the situation is isn't "so concerned". It's just smart.
     
  25. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2004
    #25
    So basically you want it to just be a web server? Depending on the load and size of the databases you plan on running, anything from an old Powermac 7500 to an XServe could fit your needs.

    If it's just for a personal site/ftp server/file server sort of deal, pick up a G4 (going rate for these is between 100-300 these days from what I've seen) or Mini and be done with it. If you want more storage you can use an external hard drive or run an SATA cable from the Mini's internal HD connector to an SATA hard drive in an external case. Newegg has a mini look alike case made by ADS for $17. It's a good USB 2.0 case and could be easily modified to E-SATA or a simple hole for a standard SATA cable could be made. A few people have done this (booted the mini from an external SATA HD), just do some googling.

    Better yet, if you have a computer to recycle you may just want to go that way. MySQL, Apache, phpmyadmin, etc are all open source so PPC support is unlikely to be removed from the source tree for the foreseeable future.

    The software you're talking about is pretty ubiquitous so there won't be any limitations per se. There are still people out there with old Power Macs and Quadras as file servers. When it's finally "forgotten" by Apple, just move it over to Yellow Dog Linux or another PPC linux distro.
     

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